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atmospheric gas burner/boilers need to be set up annually?

Jim Davis_3
Jim Davis_3 Member Posts: 578
All appliances need annual check up because mechanical devices are subject to failure without notice. Orifices can get blocked, gas regulators can fail, chimneys can deteriate or get blocked. Commercial equipment has more moving parts that can fail and are usually set much tigher on combustion that residential and have no room for variation. They also use alot more fuel and just a slight change in combustion can cause thousands of dollars in fuel usage.

Comments

  • D107
    D107 Member Posts: 1,777
    always heard it was recommended

    Does it make a difference if it's direct or pilot ignition?
    (We're talking Buderus G124x)

    One contractor told me with pilot ignition, tuneup can be once every few years. Prefers that to direct ignition but I believe it's because there's less maintenance or chance of problems. I always understood you want to have a combustion check annually, unless the logamatic somehow does that too.

    I don't like pilot ignition with a boiler that has an indirect HWH attached since the boiler's running year-round and less likelihood of ignition crudding up. Also I'm not willing to lower the boiler efficiency down to 81% or so--quite a bit less than the G115 86-7%. (oil-fired). (I know mod-cons are a different beast and must be carefully cleaned annually.)

    In the city when our building had a commercial HB Smith gas fired steam boiler-PowerFlame burner the tech would come every October and either replace the ignition or pull it and clean it then do combustion test.

    Thanks,

    David
  • David, it makes no difference

    the system should be checked and combustion tested at least once a year.

    The ignition system does not really matter as pertaining to boiler maintenance. Combustion is combustion and either having a standing pilot, spark ignition pilot, direct spark or hot surface ignition makes very little difference.

    The Power Flame unit you had in the city was also a different situation as that is a commercial package and requires a higher level of maintenance than a residential system. I recommend commercial systems be maintained twice a year or more.
  • D107
    D107 Member Posts: 1,777
    Thanks--and I know from other wall posts that digital combustion

    testing is thankfully on the rise.


    David
  • scott w.
    scott w. Member Posts: 142


    From reading this post as a homeowner with a two year old WM
    ultra with DHW, does that mean I should have the heat guy out at the begining of the season to go over the unit?

  • Mitch_6
    Mitch_6 Member Posts: 549
    Yes

    you should have your installation and owners manual on site.

    There is a yearly check up schedule there.

    Mitch S.

    To Learn More About This Professional, Click Here to Visit Their Ad in "Find A Professional"
  • scott w.
    scott w. Member Posts: 142


    I would have read the owners manual but the company that installed the boiler didn't give me one. Will have to call and see if they will give me one. If not does anyone know if weil mclane will furnish a manual?
  • D107
    D107 Member Posts: 1,777
    go to www.weil-mclain.com and you can download the ultra manual

    As you can tell from this thread I started I'm a homeowner, but I believe the Ultra is a modulating condensing boiler for which annual maintenance is even more crucial than with standard boilers. (See the other current thread 'condensing wall hung boilers.)

    David
  • It is important to understand

    that much of the newer equipment has special needs that must be addressed in order for that equipment to operate at its designed efficiency. The installer of the equipment should be responsible for annual or semi annual checks on their customers equipment. I would not recommend homeowners try to tackle the system checks required by manufacturers of equipment. I just wish the manufacturers would put more information as to combustion analysis expected on their equipment.

    Having over 40 years experience in the gas equipment and gas industry I can tell you that all equipment must be serviced at least once a year. That also includes non-heating equipment, such as dryers, gas cooking equipment, grills, decorative fireplaces, water heaters etc.

    If you do not test you do not know and CO will kill you without you knowing it.
  • Mitch_6
    Mitch_6 Member Posts: 549
    Not only should the unit have a basic

    system check but also a full combustion analysis. Weil Mclain is very specific of the range on co, co2 and o2.

    Also is is good to check the gas pressure, I have had several occasions that gas pressure dropped below the minimums when the burner went to high fire. If your pressure is down combustion will be off.

    All is in the installation and use manuals for the Ultra.

    Mitch S.

    To Learn More About This Professional, Click Here to Visit Their Ad in "Find A Professional"
  • D107
    D107 Member Posts: 1,777
    PS

    Scott the only thing I could add to Tim's wise comments are that if you say you put your boiler in two summers ago --hopefully didn't do it yourself--then you should already have had maintenance on it last fall. If your 'heat guy' didn't tell you this then you may want to look on the 'find a pro' area on the site here and get someone out to make sure install was correct and get the required maintenance done by someone who really knows how to do it. Since some pros on this site are not listed in the find-a-pro section, you might want to say which city you live in and you'll better be able to find someone close to you.

    good luck,

    David
  • scott w.
    scott w. Member Posts: 142


    The boiler was installed by a local firm that is supposed to be one of the top shelf heating & cooling firms in my area. The guy who designed the change out has all of Dan H.'s books
    and he let me borrow Pumping Away to read. I know he did the heat loss calc for sizing the new boiler.
    What I don't understand is why annual maintenance was not mentioned. From above posts is it corrrect to say if the boiler isn't serviced 1. it won't operate efficiently 2. over time damage will occur that will shorten the life of the boiler?
    I am located about forty minutes south of Pittsburgh, Pa.

    I believe the original boiler was a gravity system and the former owners in 1996 replaced the gravity with a 300,000BTU WM boiler. The 1996 WM was oversized with a huge (again) oversized circ. pump.
    I cut the gas bill by about half $$$$ by adding additional insulation,replacing steel casements with new energy efficient windows, and installing the WM ultra.
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